Call for papers: 7th ECPR General Conference Sciences Po, Bordeaux 4th – 7th September 2013

Panel on

Politics Through Procedures?

Examining the Scope and Nature of Procedural Justification in Politics

Section: Justification and Application. The Nature and Function of Political Norms

Panel Conveners: Andrei Poama (Sciences-Po, Paris) and Emanuela Ceva (University of Pavia)

This panel invites discussions of the claim that procedures are methods for assessing degrees of reasonable acceptability for or within given domains of activity. In particular, it aims to examine to what extent procedures, broadly conceived, represent sources of valid justification for various political practices and institutions (e.g. parliamentary politics, judicial politics, popular politics, party politics).

Papers will focus on one of the following – or other closely related – themes:

  • The logic of the justificatory relationship between procedures and the nature of the ‘object’ of justification. We are interested in whether and how specific procedures might exert an instrumental, constitutive or merely legitimating function when it comes to designing political institutions, taking specific political decisions or politicizing new domains of human activity. Some of the relevant debates here concern constructivism, contractualism, consequentialism and theories of democracy;
  • The kinds and scope of the moral, political or epistemic values that different types of procedures allow us either to secure, enforce or engender (truth, justice, fairness, equality, mutual respect, etc.);
  • The ways in which the competence of specific agents applying particular procedures affects the nature of political justification (questions of expertise, technocracy, etc.).

Contributions are welcome from the fields of ethics, political philosophy/theory, history of political thought and legal philosophy. Please submit your proposals online through the ECPR website, at and to both of the following e-mail addresses: and

For guidelines for proposing a paper, go to:

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